If Technology is the Answer, What Was the Question?

Embed from Getty Images

If technology is the answer, what was the question?” was the title of the keynote of the SimpliedED15 Summit I attended at UCLA this week. A fitting session for the day-long conference that focused on the future of education and the role of technology. The Summit, part of ‘Innovation Week’ in Los Angeles, featured a diverse group of education leaders including Dr. John Moravec—session presenter and author of Knowmads and Manifesto 15. Moravec discussed several frameworks for technology integration including the idea leveraging technology as a tool to support Knowmads—knowledge workers who are ‘creative, imaginative, and innovative people who can work anytime, and anywhere’ and the model of ‘invisible learning’ (Knowmad Society). The concepts were interesting, but it’s the session title that resonated most. What was the question? could be reworded to, ‘what problem are we trying to solve with technology?

This idea of activating conversations about education technology with a jeopardy-type question is a different approach, yet it holds potential for institutions and educators considering integrating technology tools or applications across online, blended or face-to-face spaces. We’re at the point with technology where questions have shifted from ‘should we use technology?’ to probing questions that focus on education problems and needs; questions that promote dialogue about how, when, and what technology can solve learning problems and needs. This approach is similar to the needs analysis phase of the design process—either instructional design or product design

Ed-Tech Needs Analysis
The goal of a needs analysis is to find a solution to a problem by asking questions to achieve a full understanding of the nature of the problem in order to find a feasible and effective solution. Applying the needs analysis process to education technology is not a stretch. A series of questions can uncover the complexities of a problem or learning need and reveal the critical information that could include: the core issue, or root problem or need, stakeholders to include, potential barriers, etc. The goal is to get the core of the problem or need, which sets the foundation for evaluating alternatives and finding solutions.  Solutions may include technology (though not always), revised or new systems or procedures, people, among others, and likely will include a combination of solutions.

The Institute of Education Sciences (ies) website features a comprehensive article “Determining Your Technology Needs” that details each step of the needs analysis process specific to education technology.  I approach the needs analysis somewhat differently, which is by not assuming technology is a solution from the get-go. However the process ies outlines is sound and instructive.

identity-crisisBelow is a summary of my five-step process for needs analysis.

  1. Ask questions to delve into the problem/need (examples)
  2. Gather information. Compile information—data, facts, results, opinions (obtained through interviews, conversations), etc.— which should all be driven by questions from step one.
  3. Analyze information to determine the core problem(s) or need(s). This step is critical—only after analyzing information and identifying the core need(s) can effective, viable solution(s) be selected. Otherwise, patchwork solutions are chosen which can result in the wasting of money and time.
  4. Prioritize needs. Often, several needs are identified, yet a thorough analysis of needs is also required to determine the most pressing.
  5. Evaluate alternatives and select best alternative to solve/meet need(s).

Sample Questions
The above process seems straightforward enough on paper—yet the application is challenging—there are often competing priorities and needs, and barriers. Below is a selection of questions used in a (K-12) school district before implementing technology tools and software as part of its Blended Learning Initiative (Arney, 2015).

  • How can we re-mediate and accelerate the learning of students on both ends of the curve?
  • How can we create more learning time for a (particular) topic?
  • How can we identify and help struggling students more quickly and efficiently using data?
  • How can we reduce the number of our graduates who need to take remedial math upon entering college?
  • How can we leverage smart-phone or web-connected devices that students bring into the classroom?

Conclusion
Asking questions of our technology—beginning with questions before jumping to education technology solutions is not new. Neil Postman, professor and author of several seminal books on media and culture, posed this question in his book “Building a Bridge to the 18th Century” (pg 42):

What is the problem to which this technology is the solution?

Exactly.

Further Reading

References

  • Arney, L. (2015). Go blended! Handbook for blending technology. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
  • Moravec, J. (2015, October). If technology is the answer, what was the question? Keynote session presented at SimplifiED Summit 2015, Los Angeles, CA
  • Postman, N. (1999). Building a bridge to the 18th century. Vintage Books.
  • US Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences. (n.d.). Part 2: Determining your technology needs. Retrieved from https://nces.ed.gov/pubs2005/tech_suite/part_2.asp

Need-to-Know-News: Video Lectures Go Hollywood, Failed Ed-Tech Program Highlights Teachers Educate Students not Technology & Ed-Tech Event in LA

This ‘Need-to-Know’ blog post series features noteworthy stories that speak of need-to-know developments within higher education and K-12 that have the potential to influence, challenge and/or transform traditional education as we know it.

hbx_720width
SCREEN TIME: The HBX Live experience—shown here in early testing—can include as many as 60 participants at a time (Photo by Webb Chappell)

1. Virtual Lectures go Hollywood Style
Video lectures in real-time where students connect to a virtual classroom is not new; live video conferencing for seminar discussions and lectures in higher education has been around for several years, though is becoming more mainstream with the expansion of online courses and lowered cost barriers to the technology. Yet a project at Harvard University—HBX Live, takes the idea of video lectures to a new level. Harvard created a television-style production studio (at an undisclosed cost) as a virtual classroom with carefully designed plans to create “the intimacy and synchronous interaction of Harvard Business School’s famed case study method in a digital environment” (HBX Live). The tag line on the article, ‘The Digital Deck’ on Harvard Business School’s site describing the studio labeled it as “a new approach to online learning” (Hanna).

When scanning the photos of HBX’s studio I was reminded of TED Talk productions with the jumbo screens and sophisticated recording technology that churns out high-quality, polished videos. Yet the difference between TED Talks and HBX Live is the purpose, which for HBX is not to record the lectures for later viewing, but to engage students in a live event.

Live_HBX_V3
HBX Live Infographic, HBX Blog

Participants from around the globe can log in concurrently and join real-time, case-based sessions with HBS faculty who teach from the HBX Live studio, located in the Boston-based facility of public broadcaster WGBH. In the custom-designed studio, a high-resolution video wall mimics the amphitheater-style seating of an HBS classroom, where up to 60 participants are displayed on individual screens simultaneously. In addition, others can audit sessions via an observer model. Sessions are expertly produced using still and roaming cameras—creating the perspective for participants of being in a real classroom, seeing both the faculty member and other students (HBXlive.com).

Insight: On the one hand it’s exciting that an Ivy League school is embracing online learning and experimenting with new ways to overcome barriers of time and place, yet on the other, it’s concerning that a school such as Harvard, considered a leader in higher education, might be setting an expectation for other higher ed institutions that in order to engage students and achieve quality learning in online settings—a high-tech, ultra-expensive studio is the only way to go. Not to mention its premise embraces a traditional method of instruction—the lecture.

2. A Lesson in Technology Integration: Teachers Educate Students—Not Tech
There’s no better example than the disaster with L.A. Unified School District’s (LASUD) iPad program to illustrate all that can go wrong with a poorly thought out technology integration plan. Here’s an example of a school district spending $1.3 billion to put an iPad in the hands of every child in the district, yet with no short or long-term strategy to support teachers (or students) with a plan for integrating the devices into the curriculum or within the traditional methods of learning. There was an inherent expectation of LASUD leadership that by giving an iPad loaded with educational software (provided by Pearson) to students, along with a handful of professional development sessions for teachers, students would be immediately engaged in learning, and learning gains would be significant. Not surprisingly the initiative was a failure. The district (painfully) discovered that it’s good teachers that make learning happen, not technology; and if you have a poor teacher, technology doesn’t make bad teaching better.

What’s disappointing is that a recently published report by American Research Institute  summarizing the initiative, missed the point completely (Margolin et al.). Of its 18 pages, teacher involvement and impact was buried on page seven with two (weak) recommendations: 1) “We recommend that the district consider offering training webinars to enable teachers to participate during contractual time at their school” and, 2) “We recommend that the district seek ways to provide access to high-quality digital resources, aligned to standards and curricula.”

Insight: Until education institutions realize that it’s instructors and teachers that support effective learning and successful technology use, little progress will be made integrating ed-tech tools to achieve successful outcomes. This holds true for face-to-face and blended education environments of K-12 and higher education. It also applies to online courses; though a well-designed online course can guide and support learning of a motivated, self-directed student, it’s teacher guidance and involvement that pushes students to think critically and engage with course concepts.

simplified_logo3. One-Day Ed-Tech Conference—SimplifiED Summit 2015
On October 6th in Los Angeles California, a group of edtech leaders that include Richard Calcutta and Dr. Michelle Weise, are featured at this day-long conference that focuses on educational technology. This summit brings together ed-tech innovators and decision makers in higher education and K-12. The focus is on technological transformation and its opportunity and impact within education. The registration site is at SimplifiED Summit 2015. Use code KVT30 for a discount on the registration fee.

The four key topics:
1. The evolving mobile campus
2. The movement to mass personalization for every student
3. The rise of digital learning resources
4. Integration strategies to implement change effectively

 

Need-to-Know-News: Blackboard’s ‘Delightful’ New Learning Experience, e-Textbook Trends & A Nifty, New Digital Bulletin Board

This ‘Need-to-Know’ blog post series features noteworthy stories that speak of need-to-know developments within higher education and K-12 that have the potential to influence, challenge and/or transform traditional education as we know it.

MP900405500Blackboard Launches ‘The New Learning Experience’

The vision will be brought to life through technology and services that are focused on the wants and needs of the learner; tightly integrated into connected and sensible workflows; packaged in a totally new, intuitive and delightful user experience; accessible, mobile and always-on; and layered with data and analytics capabilities. — Blackboard Press Release via PR NewsWire, July 21, 2015

‘Delightful’, ‘intuitive’ and ‘sensible’ are hardly words educators (or students) would associate with a learning management platform, yet according to Blackboard Inc. ‘The New Learning Experience’ of which the LMS Blackboard Learn platform is part, will be just that.  Announced last week at the BbWorld 2015 event, the New Learning experience includes the re-designed Blackboard Learn platform, the new and improved Blackboard Collaborate, web conferencing platform and a new Bb Student App. Blackboard’s CEO, Jay Bhatt, in a keynote presentation, described the new learning experience as ‘student-focused’, ‘connected’  and outlined how it will ‘follow the student on their learning journey’ through K-12, Higher Ed and beyond.  And, since Blackboard is the dominant platform in the U.S. LMS market, it’s likely that ‘the new learning experience’ may be coming to a campus near you.

LMSs_by_the_numbers_2015Spring_700FTE
LMS Data – Spring 2015 Updates [edutechnica.com/2015/03/08/lms-data-spring-2015-updates]
Insight:  Blackboard’s ‘new learning experience’ sounds pretty great—an integrated learning experience for students, delightful, user-friendly—a learner’s utopia! But can a LMS platform really deliver such an experience? More importantly do we really want to have one company managing all the functions and components of the learning experience?  I’m not a LMS expert, but after reading articles from those that are, over at e-Literate blog for instance, I’m not sure that Blackboard will even be able to deliver such a product. Furthermore after reading the disclaimer at the beginning of a Keynote of the CEO’s New Learning Initiative on YouTube, I don’t think Blackboard is either.

Screen Shot 2015-07-28 at 10.44.38 AM
Blackboard CEO Jay Bhatt at #BbTLC15 presenting the ‘New Learning Experience’. Keynote extract – May 2015 [YouTube: youtu.be/E7FALEA7ACU]

E-text books in Higher Ed — Low Adoption Rates Explained
Textbooks in most higher education courses are a key source of content for students. Yet the adoption rate of e-textbooks among students is low; on the surface puzzling given the high rates of device ownership among college students. EDUCAUSE published a paper earlier this month that explored e-textbook use in higher education, specifically student usage patterns, adoption rate, and the role of the instructor in e-textbook use. The report is helpful; the study used benchmark data gathered via an online survey in 2012 with undergraduate (n=809) and graduate (n=133) students and compared it to data gathered in 2014 using the same (and some additional) questions.

Surprising is the little difference between results from 2012 to 2014. The one significant difference is the awareness of e-textbook availability which went from 30% in 2012, unaware of e-textbook as an option, to 10% in 2014. Overall the findings suggest that lower cost is the driving factor for students’ decision to buy textbooks with convenience ranking second.

xdenoyelles-figure2.jpg.pagespeed.ic.BnDV06bCsc
Figure 2: Factors influencing e-textbook adoption, 2012 – 2014 (deNoyelles, Raible, & Seilhamer, 2015)

Instructor use of the e-textbook is also factor in student use, third ranked behind cost and convenience. The study indicated that instructor annotations and embedding questions in the e-book (feature available within  e-textbooks platforms) was a driver of student purchases of the e-text over print. Yet the overall the rate of instructors using e-textbooks was low in 2012, and lower still in 2014:

In 2012, 75 percent of participants claimed that instructors seldom or never used the features within the particular e-textbook. This rate remained low two years later, with 77 percent of participants reporting that their instructors seldom or never used the features of an e-textbook… Only around one-third of instructors acknowledged the e-textbook option in their syllabus … less than 30 percent of instructors actually modeled the use of the e-textbook. — Exploring Students’ E-Textbook Practices in Higher Education, July 6, 2015, EDUCAUSE

Insight: There are several barriers to e-textbook adoption and though EDUCAUSE’s paper suggests that instructor adoption is a significant factor, there are others—one not mentioned is the fact that college students as a demographic group don’t like to pay top dollar for digital content—they are used to getting content for free or for a minimal cost with monthly fee-based platforms such as Netflix for movies ($7.99/month) and Spotify for music ($4.99/month for students). This phenomenon makes the idea of investing a significant sum in an e-textbook inconsistent with this groups’ view of digital content; a physical textbook might be viewed more worthy of the significant investment. Secondly, what is mentioned in the paper is that most student-respondents didn’t use the interactive elements of the e-textbook, only 28%. The interactive elements are one of the primary benefits of the digital format—interactive features can provide additional and/or enhanced learning. The fact that students aren’t using these elements, whether due to availability, awareness or platform limitations, is significant barrier that once overcome will greatly improve adoption rates.

There are new developments in e-textbook platforms, one highlighted in The Chronicle of Higher Education (listed below).

Nifty, New Ed-Tech Platform  – Realtime Board
I’m a big fan of the digital white board platform, Padlet, which is an excellent tool for virtual team brainstorming sessions, back channel discussions during virtual meetings, or for team communication. Though it can be buggy especially when there are multiple users, which is why this new platform Realtime Board looks promising. It appears to be able to scale up to multiple users, can handle a variety of file formats, has an attractive interface, and is supported by multiple device platforms. The downside is that there is a fee for users, however there is a free licensing option for educators, click here for more details.

Below is an example of Realtime Board used for a Mind Map assignment.

mind_map
Example of a Mind map using Realtime Board, [https://realtimeboard.com/examples/mind_map/]

On the Horizon for Education: Blended Learning, New Learning Spaces, OERs & Cross-Institutional Collaboration

Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 5.34.41 PM
nmc.org

What’s on the horizon for education? What technologies and trends will drive changes in curriculum development and teaching in one, two or even three years? New Media Consortium’s latest Horizon Report (2015) written by an international team of educators, gives readers evidence and insights into how developments in education will (and are) influencing changes in teaching and learning. 

In last week’s post I discussed the report “Grade Level: Tracking Online Education in the United States” which presented data and analysis on participation trends in online education, MOOCs, as well as perceptions on the value and legitimacy of online learning. The news was rather dismal, quite depressing really. This report by New Media Consortium and EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative released this week, is not only more upbeat but is instructive and forward-thinking. It takes a different approach; it gives educators insights into trends and behaviour patterns in online and face-to-face education influenced by technology. The report is the result of a collaborative research effort where the panel worked in the ‘open’ via a public wiki where they shared, discussed and identified the education’s most pressing issues. The panel identified six trends, categorizing each by the level of challenge for implementation and time frame. (image below).

NMC-2015-topics-graphic-1024x716
Six trends identified in the 2015 NMC Horizon Report, pg. 2 via cdn,nmc.org

What the Blended Learning Trend Means for Educators and Institutions
I suggest the blended learning trend is the most significant and challenging. Blended learning has numerous definitions, though common to all is the concept of a student-focused education approach where learners access content, instruction/or and learning communities via the Web to augment or supplement education delivered in the classroom. Yet ten years from now, I predict that the concept of blended learning will fade away—not the learning approach but its description. The technology will become invisible. Learning won’t be classified as blended, or online, but just ‘learning‘. In the short-term however, there are barriers to overcome. Today the idea of using a web-enabled device and the web itself to replace or augment structured learning disrupts traditional practices of education— higher education and K-12. The NMC report suggests that in order for education institutions to adapt and respond effectively to educational tools and platforms, continuous visionary leadership is required. I agree. Integrating technology takes thoughtful planning, analyzing current practices, professional development and a supportive culture that embraces change.

Authors ranked blended learning into the ‘solvable’ category, as opposed to ‘difficult or ‘wicked‘; I rank blended learning as ‘difficult’ and though it is solvable, the challenge is the many dimensions of learning affected when integrating technological tools and methods that include: curriculum design, instructional delivery, professional development and training, IT services, policy development and infrastructure. Even the design of the physical classroom space and type of furnishings is impacted. The latter, ‘Redesigning Learning Spaces’ is another of the six trends identified in NMC’s report.

‘Advancing Cultures of Change and Innovation’ is another trend identified, yet it’s ranked long-term. I see a culture of change as necessary now—it’s essential to make the transitions and changes needed to deliver quality learning experiences.

All over the world, universities and colleges have been gradually rethinking how their organizations and infrastructures can be more agile. The thought is that if institutions are more flexible, they will be better able to support and promote entrepreneurial thinking — a long-term trend.  NMC Horizon Report, page 7

How Educators Can Prepare for Change
As our culture changes in response to technological innovations and economic shifts, institutions and educators (ideally) should adapt according. The NMC Horizon Report is a starting point for educators wanting to keep ahead of developments in education—to anticipate change, be proactive rather than reactive. This report is an essential read for educators, institution leaders, administrators, policymakers, and technologists who want to do just that.

References

Need-to-Know-News: Bad News for Online Learning in Annual Report & “Unsustainable” MOOCS are Full Steam Ahead

slider_Babson_Report_600x575
Babson’s Report “Grade Level: Tracking Online Education in the United States” is available at onlinelearningsurvey.com/reports/gradelevel.pdf

This ‘Need-to-Know’ blog post series features noteworthy stories that speak of need-to-know developments within higher education and K-12 that have the potential to influence, challenge and/or transform traditional education as we know it.

Bad News for Online Learning in Research Report on Online Learning
This week Babson Research Group released “Grade Level: Tracking Online Education in United States” its 12th annual report on the state of online learning in higher education (Allen & Seaman, 2015). This year’s report is not bursting with good news. Most disappointing (and disturbing) is the declining perception on the value and legitimacy of online learning by faculty. There is other valuable and important insight in the report, making it a worthy read, but the issue of faculty perception needs urgent consideration.

Only 27.6% of chief academic officers reported that their faculty accepted online instruction in 2003. This proportion showed some improvement over time, reaching a high of 33.5% in 2007. The slow increase was short-lived, however. Today, the rate is nearly back to where it began; 28.0% of academic leaders say that their faculty accept the “value and legitimacy of online education.” (pg. 21).

The acceptance of online learning among faculty has declined over the past two years, “current results if anything show that the problem is getting worse“. Disturbing given the expansion and sharing of knowledge about online education, the improved technology for facilitating quality learning experiences, not to mention the millions of dollars that higher education institutions have plowed into MOOCs. Ironically, many institutions state their reason for offering MOOCs is to explore and expose faculty to innovative and new pedagogy.  When chief academic leaders were asked the primary objective for offering MOOCs at his or her institution, it’s ‘Innovative Pedagogy‘ that ranked second highest at 18.7%, behind ‘Increasing Institution Visibility’, which ranked at 26.6% (pg. 55).

Insight: It’s no coincidence that the recent decline in the acceptance of online learning among faculty coincides with expansion of MOOCs. Massive Open Online Courses put the mode of online education under the spotlight, yet the misconception that MOOCs represent all modes of online education expanded along with the MOOC phenomenon. The majority of academic leaders missed out on an opportunity to use the MOOC phenomenon as a vehicle to involve and educate faculty on new pedagogy, fundamentals of online and blended learning, and multi-modes of instruction and learning offered by technology in and out of the classroom.

Further Reading:

The “Unsustainable” MOOCs are Full-Steam Ahead
In the same Babson report, Chief Academic Officers perception that MOOCs are not financially sustainable has increased, yet the number of institutions offering a MOOC has doubled over the year from 2013 to 2014 to 5.0%.  And, the number of institutions actively planning for a MOOC has not changed (9.3%)  (pg. 33).

The portion of academic leaders saying that they do not believe MOOCs are sustainable increased from 26.2% in 2012 to 28.5% in 2013, to 50.8% in 2014.  

To recap, even though institution leaders see MOOCs as financially unsustainable (they can’t continue to pour thousands of dollars into MOOCs) the number of institutions offering MOOCs has increased. The only rationale I can see that explains this behaviour is the planning cycle, the long lead time it takes to develop and produce a MOOC. In next year’s report, in keeping with this rationale, we should see a decline in institutions offering MOOCs.

Screen Shot 2015-02-07 at 11.12.23 AM
There has been little change in the pattern of MOOC objectives from 2013 to 2014 (pg. 34)

Insight: MOOCs do offer value in many ways, enriching a learning community, expanding the reach of an institution, providing research opportunities for institutions into new pedagogical methods and student learning behaviours online. However, given that xMOOCs are expensive to produce, deliver and sustain, the trend towards turning MOOCs into money generating streams will continue— suggesting that MOOCs will no longer be open (free) and massive. Institution leaders should be re-evaluating their strategy for MOOCs —now.

Further Reading:

Need-to-Know-News: edX goes Corporate, Wired Magazine/USC Partner to Create Degree & More on Competency Education

This ‘Need-to-Know’ blog post series features noteworthy stories that speak of need-to-know developments within higher education and K-12 that have the potential to influence, challenge and/or transform traditional education as we know it.

Embed from Getty Images

1) edX Goes Corporate
Udacity the for-profit MOOC provider did an about-face a few months ago, shifting its focus from the higher education market to vocational education, partnering with big tech companies. Coursera too is reaching out to companies looking for ways to generate a revenue stream. Now edX is going the corporate route. Most disappointing given its not-for-profit premise, which differed significantly from the others—”(edX is) committed to research that will allow us to understand how students learn, how technology can transform learning, and the ways teachers teach on campus and beyond“.  This past Wednesday, October 1, edX announced the launch of professional education classes on topics including energy, entrepreneurship and cybersecurity, priced at up to $1,249 a person, with volume discounts available for some employers (Korn).

Why? According to CEO of edX, Anant Agarwal, “This goes to our sustainability story. Though edX is a nonprofit enterprise, it still needs cash to develop the free courses taken by nearly three million participants world-wide”. 

When considering the statement above in conjunction with one that Agarwal made in another interview, one with Wired magazine last month, “…effective uses of the MOOC model are only beginning to take shape. Enrollment in edX courses has doubled over last year, and he (Agarwal) believes we’re on the verge of an era he calls MOOC 2.0. “We’ve been growing as others are throwing in the towel” (Lapowsky), one wonders if he meant MOOC 2.0 as the corporate-MOOC—the not-for-free version of MOOCs.

Insight: MOOC providers do not (and never did) have a sustainable financial model to offer free courses indefinitely. It sounds noble—offering free education to learners worldwide. But somebody has to pay eventually. Development costs run into the thousands (paid for by the university-partners), operating costs considerable. MOOCs are not ‘free’. We all pay for free education in different ways; now it’s running dry and the only way to go it appears is to go corporate.

post_wired_logo_150x602)  Wired Magazine and USC Team-Up to offer “Real World Degree”
Another twist this week on an education partnership—University of Southern California (USC) announced its partnership with Condé Nast and Wired Magazine (Condé Nast is the parent company) to offer a degree program. And, as a journalist at Wired puts it “it’s a real credential, not just a certificate with the WIRED logo stamped” (Wohlsen). This is perhaps the most odd combination for an education partnership I’ve read about to date. There’s other businesses involved too, Qubed Education, which is joint venture between higher-ed investment firm University Ventures and Condé Nast, and an online degree consultancy company Synergis Education.

Taking the best from USC and WIRED, we can teach discipline and disruption, business fundamentals and the very latest innovation models from Silicon Valley. This is going to be thrilling

Insight: Businesses and now education institutions are capitalizing on an underserved market in the education sector, which is the adult learner that works full-time with some or little higher education. Yet the implications for traditional higher education are many— higher education institutions (and students) become a testing ground for business experiments and models, it draws funds away from higher education institutions, and the practice could be viewed by some, as undermining the integrity of higher education.

3) (Another) Course Management Platform geared to Competency-Based Education 
A couple of weeks ago I shared a story about a new course management provider, Helix Education. The system is different from your traditional LMS, it’s created to deliver a single platform to serve competency-based education programs (CBE), on-campus, online, or continuing education formats (Helix).  This week, another LMS launch by Motvis Learning. It’s also a  platform focused on CBE, though it’s referred to as a ‘relationship management system‘ rather than a LMS.

For students, the system looks more like a social network than a learning management system. When they log in, students are greeted by an activity feed, showing them a tabbed view of their current projects, goals and feedback. A column on the right side of the screen lists connections and to-dos, and a bar along the top tracks progress toward mastering competencies. (Straumsheim)

Insight: Competency based education has more potential for disruption to the higher education model than MOOCs ever will.

4) Multi-Language MOOC on Ed-Tech starts October

The 27th of October we will launch the third edition of the Learning Design Studio for ICT-based Learning Activities MOOC. The course will last 5 weeks and a group of facilitators will support you in the task of designing your own learning activities and lessons. The course will be offered in six languages: English, Spanish, Catalan, Greek, Slovenian and French.”

For more information: http://handsonict.eu/join-the-mooc/